The DNA Molecule’s Intelligent Design – Convincing Evidence for God

Subject: The DNA Molecule’s Intelligent Design – Convincing Evidence for God
Hebrews 11:1 “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
If you are an atheist and enjoy debating the big questions (who am I? where did I come from?, why am I here?), chances are you use one of the following arguments to defend your position: 1) claims for God’s existence are meaningless if they cannot be tested for truth or falsehood, 2) my atheism is based on my commitment to reason and science, 3) I adhere to the policy of Socrates: follow the evidence wherever it leads, and 4) any thinking person should presuppose atheism until there is clear evidence for God.
You will be interested to know that these arguments all come together under the scholarship of one man – Professor Anthony Flew. Regarded as one of the most brilliant analytical philosophers of the 20th century, he was also regarded as one of the world’s most renowned and influential philosophical atheists. His classic 1968 paper “Theology and Falsification” was written while an undergraduate student in Oxford and a member of C.S. Lewis’s famous Socratic Club, a forum for debate between atheists and Christians.
He was a prolific author and had a reputation as a passionate and energetic lecturer. One of his favorite questions for undergraduate students was: “Is it better to be a satisfied pig or a dissatisfied Socrates?”, which was meant to stimulate them to think seriously about the big questions and the existence of God. He publicly debated the leading Christian philosophers, including C.S. Lewis and William Lane Craig, wanting to expose what he saw as the weakness of theology, which to him was the lack of clear evidence for God.
But then in 2004 Professor Flew dropped a bombshell on the academic world – he announced that he had changed his mind and now believed God exists. Why? Flew repeated what has always been his stance: “I had to go where the evidence leads. My position has always been subject to correction by further evidence and further argument.” Dr. Alvin Plantinga, Notre Dame’s renowned Professor of Analytical Philosophy, commended his colleague on his convictions: “It speaks very well of Professor Flew’s honesty. After all these years of opposing the idea of a Creator, he reverses his position on the basis of the evidence.”
Our verse this week from the New Testament book of Hebrews helps us understand that the evidence Dr. Flew discovered for the existence of God is available to everyone and is an integral part of biblical faith. Biblical faith is a combination of the substance of what Christians hope for (which means to wait in earnest expectation for a future reality) with the present reality of the evidence for God, who makes His invisible attributes clearly available for all to see in the things He has made (see Romans 1:20).
What evidence does Dr. Flew credit for changing his mind? The DNA molecule: “My relevant evidence is the apparent impossibility of providing a naturalistic theory of the origin from DNA of the first reproducing species… the only reason which I have for beginning to think of believing in a First Cause god is the impossibility of providing a naturalistic account of the origin of the first reproducing organisms.”
In the 2004 symposium ‘Has Science Discovered God’, Flew elaborated on why intelligence is needed for life: ‘What I think DNA material has done is show that intelligence must have been involved in getting these extraordinarily diverse elements together. The enormous complexity by which the results were achieved look to me like the work of intelligence.” Flew dismisses naturalism as a viable explanation in His 2007 book “There is a God: How the World’s Most Notorious Atheist Changed his Mind”: “The present physical universe gives too little time for these theories of abiogenesis to get the job done. The philosophical question that has not been answered in origin-of-life studies is this: How can a universe of mindless matter produce beings with intrinsic ends, self-replication capabilities, and ‘coded chemistry’? Here we are not dealing with biology, but an entirely different category of problem.”
Professor of Philosophy Peter S. Williams puts it like this: “The primary reason Flew has become a theist is that scientific evidence has convinced him that the origin of life required intelligent design. Flew now argues that there is good reason to ‘postulate something behind or beyond the natural universe’ precisely because the ‘fundamental laws of nature’ cannot ‘be taken as the last word in all series of answers to questions about why things are as they are’. Specifically, this cannot be done with regard to the origin of life.”
If the most famous academic atheist can change his mind based on evidence, surely anyone open to considering the evidence can find the answers to the big questions in the reality of God’s existence.